Strategic Water Management in the 21st Century

The global water crisis in the 21st century is related to many economic, political, and social factors. A lot of people believe that the main reason behind the crisis lies in poor strategic water management and not in the lack of resources. It is estimated that in a few years almost half of the world’s population will live in water-stressed areas, such as MENA, where inhabitants will struggle to gain access to clean water.


Saving the Environment

It is no secret that the environmental pollution is affecting every aspect of our lives. But when it comes to water resources, the problem is very obvious. Most of the water available on our planet is contaminated and has to go through a lot of filtration processes before it is available for use.

This means that governments need to work by establishing effective laws that criminalize the contamination of resources. At the same time, they should invest in clean water in order to establish filtration stations. Moreover, they will have to keep an eye on new technologies that they all have to adopt in order to save the current supply of clean water.

In the majority of the poor and developing countries, the inadequately made infrastructure is the reason why a lot of clean water ends up in waste. Most of these countries have no specific laws or tactics that can be used to benefit from wastewater or other purposes.

Pollution is also one of the reasons why most of the water available is left unused. You can definitely write an incredible research paper on the topic with the help of But solving the problem is a little bit more challenging.

In order to remove waste and chemicals, water has to be treated extensively. The process is expensive and most developing countries can’t afford these technologies. So, they switch to other resources that are already easier to use.

Water Wars in Asia

In some areas in the world, there is already a political, even a military, conflict because of the scarcity of water. India and Pakistan are already fighting over resources. The 2 neighbor countries are currently heading towards a military crisis that might damage the ecology of the region for good. India is planning to build 3 dams which will redirect the flow of its rivers away thus blocking Pakistan’s access to the supply coming from the Ravi, Sutlej, and Beas rivers.

Although the 2 countries already have a successful treaty that they both signed in the 1960s, new political, economic, and industrial changes have made some of the terms seem obsolete especially to the Indian side. Today, India believes that some of the resources that run to Pakistan are already affecting its industrial and economic progress and development.

A New Conflict Over the River Nile

There is also another conflict going on between Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia. For centuries, Egypt has enjoyed the generous flow of the River Nile that provided for the Egyptians and was the main reason behind the boom of the Ancient Egyptian Civilization. Moreover, in the 1960s Egypt was able to build the High Dam that was used to save water in times of drought as well as generate enough electricity to fund the modern industrial revolution.

The new war is taking place between Egypt on one side and Ethiopia on the other, while Sudan is in the middle between the two neighboring countries. The dispute started when Ethiopia decided to build a dam that will block most of Egypt’s water supply. Ethiopia claims that Egypt has politically controlled the Nile for decades and even centuries and it was about time that this all changed.

With the help of Israel, Ethiopia decided to build this dam until it was almost finished during a period where Egypt was dealing with a lot of internal political unrest. Ethiopia claims that the dam is essential for the country’s development as it will help to provide the electricity needed to fund an industrial progress, pretty much what Egypt did about 6 decades ago. However, with the population increase in Egypt, the new dam presents a strategic threat.

Although Egypt has built their Aswan Dam to preserve water, a lot goes wasted due to poor water management and the lack of investment in resources’ preservation. Strategic experts believe that Egypt will start to suffer from immense water shortages over the next decade.

People Have to Change

Dealing with the crisis starts with raising water awareness. A lot of people don’t realize that our planet can eventually run out of clean water. The increase in population presents a huge increase in demand that the current resources are unable to provide. People can do a few things that will help preserve water, one person at a time.


Climate change is profoundly affecting water resources in the Middle East

Using wastewater for irrigation is one of the best solutions to make use of wastewater without spending a lot of money or resources on chemical treatments. A lot of people should also learn about the smart domestic use of water at home. This will include the amount of time and the way they use water while brushing their teeth or taking a shower. Home residents should make the necessary investment in home appliances like washing machines and dishwashers especially the ones that use less water and energy.

A crisis is not going to affect one region or country in particular. Climate change is going to aggravate the water crisis in the coming years in water-stressed regions of the world. The environmental, ecological, social, and political effects can be widely spread across the globe. For example, the scarcity of water will affect several ecosystems involving the lives of animals, fish, birds, and plants. As a result, a lot of animals can go extinct due to the uncontrollable drought.

At the same time, the shortage in water can lead to the development of a lot of health problems that are going to affect millions of people. It is important that all countries should cooperate to come up with better water crisis management strategies to help our planet survive.

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About Salman Zafar

Salman Zafar is the Founder of EcoMENA, and an international consultant, advisor, ecopreneur and journalist with expertise in waste management, waste-to-energy, renewable energy, environment protection and sustainable development. His geographical areas of focus include Middle East, Africa, Asia and Europe. Salman has successfully accomplished a wide range of projects in the areas of biomass energy, biogas, waste-to-energy, recycling and waste management. He has participated in numerous conferences and workshops as chairman, session chair, keynote speaker and panelist. Salman is the Editor-in-Chief of EcoMENA, and is a professional environmental writer with more than 300 popular articles to his credit. He is proactively engaged in creating mass awareness on renewable energy, waste management and environmental sustainability in different parts of the world. Salman Zafar can be reached at or

3 Responses to Strategic Water Management in the 21st Century

  1. Pingback: CSP-Powered Desalination: Prospects in MENA | EcoMENA

  2. dakotaleest says:

    Thanks for such cognitive article. I know that almost all African countries suffer from lack of drinking water. The government should take care more of their citizens and build dams or something like that to filter water.

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